Addressing the Problem of Individuality in the New African Metaphysics


The new African metaphysics, called Consolationism, does not focus on collectivism like the old metaphysics. It aims at uncovering the driving force behind historical progress. Mood is identified as the driving force. Mood is defined as yearning and yearning as the desire for perfection. Mood is derived from Force, the traditional African notion of being, which defines being as mobility or dynamism. But like concept of force, mood is entangled and entrapped in idealism. Individual human subjectivity is substituted with an objectified spiritual principle, called Eternal Mood existing outside nature, as the driving force of historical processes. The problem with the new metaphysics is that it alienates human creative will in an external spiritual force. Thus, it renders human beings passive and inactive, or simply as puppets of the spiritual forces. Individual human beings are deprived significant roles in history’s playbook of meaning-making and constitution of experience. Therefore, this article investigates how the notion of yearning or mood can be reinterpreted to empower the individual human subjective will to create one’s existence and realize it in materiality. Human beings rather than spiritual force drive the historical process via their material labour. The work offers a critique of Consolationism.

Keywords: mood, force, consolationism, individuality, subjectivity, yearning, being, freewill, community, consciousness

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